It was reported on Tuesday, July 12, 2011, that Congressman Ron Paul of Texas is going to retire from the US House of Representatives after his current term expires in December of next year. This will mean that Dr. Paul, an OB/GYN physician, will have served in the US Congress for 24 years. Dr. Paul is currently a Republican candidate for President of the United States also.
Readers of this column know that I have been a strong supporter of Ron Paul for many years. I personally campaigned for him in 2008 in four states, and became an independent candidate for President that same year only after Dr. Paul was eliminated from the Republican primary race. And I am very honored to have received Dr. Paul’s endorsement for President during the 2008 Presidential general election.
See the Yahoo/AP report announcing the retirement of Congressman Paul here.
In an associated video, Dr. Paul is quoted as saying, "You can’t continue with the status quo." But that is exactly what most Americans today seem more than willing to do, and we are quickly losing this constitutional republic as a result. Dr. Paul was the one man in Congress who was willing to fight the status quo, and he did so tirelessly and courageously all of his public life. And he is the only candidate for President from either major political party that would fight the status quo if elected in 2012. Mark it down: it won’t matter to a tinker’s dam one way or the other if any other Presidential candidate is elected next year!
In fact, the lack of vision and ability to discern the times seems to be the most blatant weakness in the vast majority of well meaning "conservative" groups, causes, or movements. They seem to think that we have to use the same old, same old in order to change the same old, same old; and it just ain’t going to work!
The philosophy of gradualism only serves the purposes of those who are taking the country deeper and deeper into socialism, corporatism, and fascism. Nothing of major significance (in a positive direction) has ever been accomplished gradually. Things deteriorate gradually, but they are built violently and suddenly! The United States was not created gradually, but violently and suddenly! In fact, every great movement in history was a movement of violent, sudden revolution or change.
By violent, I do not necessarily mean bloody. I refer to Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary, 4th definition: "[S]howing, or resulting from, strong feeling or emotion; passionate;"
The vast majority of political candidates and campaigns are mostly without strong feeling, emotion, or passion. Where are the strong feeling for the principles of liberty and constitutional government? Where is the emotion? Where is the passion? The vast majority of political candidates are cleverly schooled in the science of not being emotional or passionate about anything, especially about things as archaic as the principles of federalism, State autonomy, independence, and constitutionalism. I know. I’ve sat in those lectures; I’ve attended those classes. And I flunked the course, by the way.
Ladies and Gentlemen, the status quo got us in this mess and the status quo is going to keep us in this mess! If we expect anything different to come out of any election, anywhere in the country, we are going to have to have a violent, sudden break with the status quo! This begins by casting aside all these "pragmatic" arguments about who can or cannot win, about whose "turn" it is to be nominated, about voting for the "lesser of two evils," and about who is the party or establishment "darling." It means thinking outside the box! It means learning enough about the principles that made this nation free to be able to identify the real from the phony when we see it.
Ask the average "conservative" or "Christian" to explain the difference between liberty and freedom and he will give you that "deer in the headlights" kind of stare. For all intents and purposes, America lost its liberty a long time ago, and all the battles raging today are merely about which individual freedoms will be kept somewhat intact, and which ones won’t.
For example, a large number of pro-life activists are blind to the importance of constitutional government to the preservation of liberty, which protects the right to life! Many pro-Second Amendment advocates are blind to the importance of the principle of federalism, which preserves liberty, including the right to keep and bear arms. Ditto for many pro-family advocates, property rights advocates, homeschool advocates, etc., etc., etc.
While I do not agree with every issue Ron Paul has embraced, on the whole, he is the one man inside the Beltway who understands the importance of constitutional government, federalism, and independence. Listen to practically any Republican "conservative" politician or TV talking head and one will hear a constant regurgitation of the status quo. Name the candidate for President from either party (besides Ron Paul) who passionately excoriates the Bush preemptive war doctrine. Name the candidate for President from either party (besides Ron Paul) who is emotional about getting the US out of the UN and getting the UN out of the US. Name the candidate for President from either major party (besides Ron Paul) who has called for the elimination of the Federal Reserve, or who has passionately called for the return to sound money, or who has emotionally resisted the globalist agenda of the Council on Foreign Relations or Trilateral Commission or the Bilderbergers. Name the candidate for President from either party (besides Ron Paul) who has emotionally voiced his or her objection to US forces occupying over 100 countries and the CIA meddling with the internal political affairs of sovereign nations all over the world. Name the candidate for President from either major party (besides Ron Paul) who passionately calls for an end to ALL foreign aid, including foreign aid to Israel.
Hardly anyone is arguing the principles of liberty! It would appear that the vast majority of political candidates at every level–or the "conservative" organizations that support them–do not even understand the principles of liberty. Hence, the NRA endorses government licensing the "right" to bear arms. Churches endorse government licensing of the "right" to marry. I even heard one well-known pro-life, Christian activist say that she didn’t care about whether a certain pro-life initiative was constitutional or not. The same could be said for many activists from just about every "conservative" group.
Why cannot conservatives see the big picture? Why cannot they understand that either we have liberty for all, or we have liberty for none? Why do we conservatives look to Washington, D.C., to solve our problems and then turn around and complain about liberals trying to inject Washington, D.C., into our lives?
When Ron Paul retires from Congress, who will be the voice for constitutionalism, federalism, and independence? There has been a maxim around the Baldwin house that goes, "Since John Wayne died, the country has gone to hell." I think the same will likely be said after Ron Paul retires–if he’s not elected President, of course.
The retirement of Congressman Paul also highlights the fact that freedom-loving Americans must stop looking to Washington, D.C., to save them from their plight. Washington, D.C., is not the solution; Washington, D.C., is the problem! As I have said repeatedly, liberty and freedom will be won or lost at the State level. If we do not begin electing men and women as governor, sheriff, etc., who will passionately and emotionally fight for the principles of federalism and constitutionalism, resist the tyrannical machinations coming out of Washington, D.C., and rally people in the defense of liberty and freedom, it is all over for America–all of the flag waving, foreign wars, and patriotic rhetoric notwithstanding!